Princeton's patent value ranked third among universities

By Teresa Riordan
November 28, 2006

IEEE Spectrum ranked Princeton third among universities in its assessment of “the world’s most valuable patent portfolios.” The ranking was published in the magazine’s November issue.

“This reflects the strength of patents in the Engineering School and the greater University,” said John Ritter, director of the Office of Technology Licensing and Intellectual Property at Princeton.

According to Ritter, nearly three-quarters of patents granted to Princeton are for research in the Engineering School.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology ranked first and the University of California system ranked second. Stanford University, the University of Michigan and the California Institute of Technology rounded out the top six slots.

The ranking took into account four indicators:

  • Pipeline growth: the university’s trend in patenting, measured by dividing the number of patents obtained in 2005 by the annual average for the years 2000 through 2004.
  • Pipeline impact: how frequently the university’s patents are citied in other patents.
  • Pipeline generality: the variety of technologies that might spring from a patent.
  • Pipeline originality: the number of original inventions compared to the number of inventions that were incremental improvements on existing technology.

The article also ranked companies in terms of patent power. The full article can be found online at www.spectrum.ieee.org/nov06/4699.

In the spring, Princeton’s Center for Innovation in Engineering Education will sponsor its second Innovation Forum, which will feature cutting edge research across Princeton with robust potential commercial applications.